You were a teenager once. Having survived that stage, now it’s time to share your experiences and pass on wisdom to your daughter about what to do (and what not to do) in the teen years.
In adolescence, your daughter goes through several physical and mental changes while dealing with peer pressure, teenage crushes, responsibilities, and other significant problems. What follows are several big conversations every mom should have with her daughters.
10 Things You Should Prepare Your Adolescent Daughter For
#1: Long-lasting Friendships
More often, friendships during adolescence are about being with the “right” crowd and getting noticed. In that pursuit, we sometimes end up making the wrong friends or even end up losing good friends. Encourage your daughter to value friendship; teach her about the importance of friends, how to be a good friend, and how to nurture lasting bonds with her friends..
The teenage years may seem to go on forever, but it really is a short phase. When we were teenagers, even the smallest things would make us anxious; later, we realized that we could have worried less and had more fun instead. Remind her to enjoy life once in a while, despite all the chaos.
#3: “The Talk” (Physical Intimacy)
It’s between 16 and 18 years of age that a lot of girls begin to have physical relationships. At this stage, you must talk to your teen about STDs and staying safe, and maybe even not rushing into physical interactions until she’s older. You can always say ”no” to her intentions, but remember to justify your reasoning with an explanation. Be gentle when you have this conversation, and make sure your teen is comfortable with the discussion.
#4: Peer Pressure
This is something every teenager deals with. So giving your daughter a heads up would help her be prepared for any situation. Peer pressure can have a very negative impact. Make your daughter strong enough to say “no” and to avoid hanging around with friends who indulge in harmful activities such as drinking and driving, partying, etc.
#5: Every “Body” is Different
Teenage bodies are in the process of maturing, so there will be changes your daughter will no doubt be keenly aware of. This is also the time when girls develop a body image. Teach her that it’s not essential to look skinny or curvy, it’s important to be healthy. Promote “body positivity,” where all shapes and sizes are beautiful, that way she will appreciate her body. Always motivate her to eat a healthy diet and to exercise.
#6: The Gadget Craze
From smartphones to laptops to iPads, your teen could be glued to one screen or another at any time. To prevent gadget addiction, encourage her to participate in sports, exercise, and outdoor adventures.
Teenagers tend to get moody and, at times, arrogant; that’s when discipline becomes essential. You can start with basic ground rules like respecting others and being polite and helpful, then move on to other rules based on their behavior.
#8: Teenage Problems
Once your daughter hits puberty, the various changes in her appearance might be bothering her. So explain to her that body hair is natural and that acne is not going to last forever. Encourage her to delay waxing or shaving and using pimple creams, as her skin is still tender and young and not suitable for such treatments.
Now would be an excellent time to bestow some responsibilities on your daughter. She is older now, and as a teenager, she would love some independence. So, teach her to manage her own money. Teach her to budget her expenses based on her weekly allowance. And, most importantly, educate her about the importance of savings and how money should be mindfully spent.
#10: You Will Always be There
Amidst everything going on in their life, a teenager might feel lonely. They may need someone to look up to. So, give your daughter an assurance that you will always love her and be there for her. Listen to her when she needs you, and talk to her. Create a relationship that will help her share her feelings without hesitation.
Lastly, tell her how much you love her, that you will not judge her, and that you will always be there to answer any question. Keeping an open line of communication with your child will lead to better relationships.